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Daily Tehillim - Psalms

Chapters 69-71

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Special Custom for the Month of Elul and High Holidays
The Baal Shem Tov instituted a custom of reciting three additional chapters of Psalms each day, from the 1st of Elul until Yom Kippur (on Yom Kippur the remaining 36 chapters are recited, thereby completing the entire book of Psalms).
See below for today's additional chapters.
Chapter 69
1. For the Conductor, on the shoshanim,1 by David.
2. Deliver me, O God, for the waters have reached until my soul!
3. I have sunk in muddy depths without foothold; I have come into deep waters, and the current sweeps me away.
4. I am wearied by my crying, my throat is parched; my eyes pined while waiting for my God.
5. More numerous than the hairs on my head are those who hate me without reason. Mighty are those who would cut me off, those who are my enemies without cause. What I have not stolen, I will then have to return.
6. O God, You know my folly, and my wrongs are not hidden from You.
7. Let not those who hope in You be shamed through me, O my Lord, God of Hosts; let not those who seek You be disgraced through me, O God of Israel,
8. because for Your sake I have borne humiliation, disgrace covers my face.
9. I have become a stranger to my brothers, an alien to my mother's sons,
10. for the envy of Your House has consumed me, and the humiliations of those who scorn You have fallen upon me.
11. And I wept while my soul fasted, and it was a humiliation to me.
12. I made sackcloth my garment, and became a byword for them.
13. Those who sit by the gate speak of me, and [of me] are the songs of drunkards.
14. May my prayer to You, Lord, be at a gracious time; God, in Your abounding kindness, answer me with Your true deliverance.
15. Rescue me from the mire, so that I not sink; let me be saved from my enemies and from deep waters.
16. Let not the current of water sweep me away, nor the deep swallow me; and let not the pit close its mouth over me.
17. Answer me, Lord, for Your kindness is good; according to Your abundant mercies, turn to me.
18. Do not hide Your face from Your servant, for I am in distress-hurry to answer me.
19. Draw near to my soul and liberate it; redeem me, so that my enemies [not feel triumphant].
20. You know my humiliation, my shame, and my disgrace; all my tormentors are before You.
21. Humiliation has broken my heart, and I have become ill. I longed for comfort, but there was none; for consolers, but I did not find.
22. They put gall into my food, and for my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink.
23. Let their table become a trap before them, and [their] serenity, a snare.
24. Let their eyes be darkened so that they cannot see, and let their loins continually falter.
25. Pour Your wrath upon them, and let the fierceness of Your anger overtake them.
26. Let their palace be desolate, let there be no dweller in their tents,
27. for they persecute the one whom You struck, and tell of the pain of Your wounded ones.
28. Add iniquity to their iniquity, and let them not enter into Your righteousness.
29. May they be erased from the Book of Life, and let them not be inscribed with the righteous.
30. But I am poor and in pain; let Your deliverance, O God, streng-then me.
31. I will praise the Name of God with song, I will extol Him with thanksgiving!
32. And it will please the Lord more than [the sacrifice of] a mature bull with horns and hooves.
33. The humble will see it and rejoice; you seekers of God, [see] and your hearts will come alive.
34. For the Lord listens to the needy, and He does not despise His prisoners.
35. Let heaven and earth praise Him, the seas and all that moves within them,
36. for God will deliver Zion and build the cities of Judah, and they will settle there and possess it;
37. and the seed of His servants will inherit it, and those who love His Name will dwell in it.

Footnotes
1.

A musical instrument shaped like a shoshana, a rose (Metzudot).

Chapter 70
David prays that his enemies be shamed and humiliated for their shaming him and reveling in his troubles. Then the righteous will rejoice, and chant songs and praises always.
1. For the Conductor, by David, to remind.
2. O God, [come] to rescue me; O Lord, hurry to my aid.
3. Let those who seek my life be shamed and disgraced; let those who wish me harm retreat and be humiliated.
4. Let those who say, "Aha! Aha!" be turned back in return for their shaming [me].
5. Let all who seek You rejoice and delight in You, and let those who love Your deliverance say always, "May God be exalted!”
6. But I am poor and needy; hurry to me, O God! You are my help and deliverer; O God, do not delay!

Chapter 71
In this awe-inspiring prayer, David speaks of his enemies' desire to kill him, declaring him deserving of death.
1. I have taken refuge in You, O Lord; I will never be shamed.
2. Rescue me and deliver me in Your righteousness; incline Your ear to me and save me.
3. Be for me a sheltering rock, to enter always. You have ordered my salvation, for You are my rock and my fortress.
4. O my God, rescue me from the hand of the wicked, from the palm of the scheming and violent.
5. For You are my hope, O my Lord, God, my security since my youth.
6. I have relied on You from the womb; You drew me from my mother's innards; my praise is of You always.
7. I became an example to the masses, yet You were my mighty refuge.
8. Let my mouth be filled with Your praise, all day long with Your glory.
9. Do not cast me aside in old age; do not forsake me when my strength fails;
10. for my enemies say of me, and those who watch my soul conspire together,
11. saying, "God has forsaken him. Give chase and catch him, for there is no rescuer.”
12. O God, do not distance Yourself from me; my God, hurry to my aid.
13. Let the adversaries of my soul be shamed and consumed; let those who seek my harm be enwrapped in disgrace and humiliation.
14. But as for me, I will always hope; I will add to all Your praises.
15. My mouth will tell of Your righteousness, all day long of Your deliverance, for I do not know their number.
16. I come with the strength of my Lord, God; I mention Your righteousness, Yours alone.
17. O God, You have taught me since my youth, and to this day I tell of Your wonders.
18. Even into old age and hoariness, O God, do not abandon me, until I tell of Your might to the generations, and of Your strength to all who are to come.
19. Your righteousness, O God, reaches the high heavens, for You do great things; O God, who is like You!
20. You, Who has shown me many and grievous troubles, You will revive me again; You will lift me again from the depths of the earth.
21. You will increase my greatness; You will turn and console me.
22. I too1 will thank You on the lyre for Your faithfulness, My God; I will sing to You on the harp, O Holy One of Israel.
23. My lips will rejoice when I sing to you, as well as my soul which You have redeemed.
24. My tongue will also utter Your righteousness all day, for those who seek my harm are shamed and disgraced.

Footnotes
1.

As you increase my greatness, so will I increase your praise (Metzudot).

Additional Three Chapters
The Baal Shem Tov instituted a custom of reciting three additional chapters of Psalms each day, from the 1st of Elul until Yom Kippur (on Yom Kippur the remaining 36 chapters are recited, thereby completing the entire book of Psalms).
Today's Chapters are 37, 38 and 39.
Chapter 37
King David exhorts his generation not to be jealous of the prosperity of the wicked, for it may lead to falling into their ways. Rather, put your trust in God, conduct yourselves with integrity, and God will take care of everything.
1. By David. Do not compete with the wicked; do not envy doers of injustice.
2. For like grass they will be swiftly cut down; like green vegetation they will wither.
3. Trust in the Lord and do good; then will you abide in the land and be nourished by faith.
4. Delight in the Lord, and He will grant you the desires of your heart.
5. Cast your needs upon the Lord; rely on Him, and He will take care.
6. He will reveal your righteousness like the light, your justness like the high noon.
7. Depend on the Lord and hope in Him. Compete not with the prosperous, with the man who invents evil schemes.
8. Let go of anger, abandon rage; do not compete with [one who intends] only to harm.
9. For the evildoers will be cut down; but those who hope in the Lord, they will inherit the earth.
10. For soon the wicked one will not be; you will gaze at his place and he will be gone.
11. But the humble shall inherit the earth, and delight in abundant peace.
12. The wicked one plots against the righteous, and gnashes his teeth at him.
13. My Lord laughs at him, for He sees that his day will come.
14. The wicked have drawn a sword and bent their bow to fell the poor and destitute, to slaughter those of upright ways.
15. But their sword shall enter their own hearts, and their bows shall break.
16. Better the little of the righteous, than the abundant wealth of the wicked.
17. For the strength of the wicked will be broken, but the Lord supports the righteous.
18. The Lord appreciates the days of the innocent; their inheritance will last forever.
19. They will not be shamed in times of calamity, and in days of famine they will be satisfied.
20. For the wicked shall perish, and the enemies of the Lord are as fattened sheep: consumed, consumed in smoke.
21. The wicked man borrows and does not repay; but the righteous man is gracious and gives.
22. For those blessed by Him will inherit the earth, and those cursed by Him will be cut off.
23. The steps of man are directed by God; He desires his way.
24. When he totters he shall not be thrown down, for the Lord supports his hand.
25. I have been a youth, I have also aged; yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his offspring begging bread.
26. All day he is kind and lends; his offspring are a blessing.
27. Turn away from evil and do good, and you will dwell [in peace] forever.
28. For the Lord loves justice, he will not abandon his pious ones-they are protected forever; but the offspring of the wicked are cut off.
29. The righteous shall inherit the earth and dwell upon it forever.
30. The mouth of the righteous one utters wisdom, and his tongue speaks justice.
31. The Torah of his God is in his heart; his steps shall not falter.
32. The wicked one watches for the righteous man, and seeks to kill him.
33. But the Lord will not abandon him in his hand, nor condemn him when he is judged.
34. Hope in the Lord and keep His way; then He will raise you high to inherit the earth. When the wicked are cut off, you shall see it.
35. I saw a powerful wicked man, well-rooted like a vibrant, native tree.
36. Yet he vanished, behold he was gone; I searched for him, but he could not be found.
37. Watch the innocent, and observe the upright, for the future of such a man is peace.
38. But sinners shall be destroyed together; the future of the wicked is cut off.
39. The deliverance of the righteous is from the Lord; He is their strength in time of distress.
40. The Lord helps them and delivers them; He delivers them from the wicked and saves them, because they have put their trust in Him.
Chapter 38
A prayer for every individual, bewailing the length of the exile. One who is in distress should recite this psalm, hence its introduction, "A psalm... to remind" (to remind us to recite it in times of distress). One can also derive many lessons from it.
1. A psalm by David, to remind.
2. O Lord, do not rebuke me in Your anger, nor chastise me in Your wrath.
3. For Your arrows have landed in me, Your hand descended upon me.
4. There is no soundness in my flesh because of Your rage, no peace in my bones because of my sin.
5. For my iniquities have flooded over my head; like a heavy load, they are too heavy for me.
6. My wounds are rotted; they reek because of my foolishness.
7. I am bent and extremely bowed; all day I go about in gloom.
8. My sides are inflamed; there is no soundness in my flesh.
9. I am weakened and extremely depressed; I howl from the moaning of my heart.
10. My Lord, all that I desire is before You; my sighing is not hidden from You.
11. My heart is engulfed, my strength has left me; the light of my eyes they, too, are not with me.
12. My friends and companions stand aloof from my affliction; my intimates stand afar.
13. The seekers of my life have laid traps; those who seek my harm speak destructiveness; they utter deceits all day long.
14. But I am like a deaf man, I do not hear; like a mute that does not open his mouth.
15. I was like a man that does not perceive, and in whose mouth there are no rebuttals.
16. Because for You, O Lord, I wait; You will answer, my Lord, my God.
17. For I said, "Lest they rejoice over me; when my foot falters they will gloat over me.”
18. For I am accustomed to limping, and my pain is constantly before me.
19. For I admit my iniquity; I worry because of my sin.
20. But my enemies abound with life; those who hate me without cause flourish.
21. Those who repay evil for good resent me for my pursuit of good.
22. Do not forsake me, O Lord; do not be distant from me, my God.
23. Hurry to my aid, O my Lord, my Salvation.
Chapter 39
David's prayer bewailing his suffering. But it is not suffering itself that pains him, rather he is saddened by its disturbing his Torah study. For man's days are few, "and if not now, when (will he study)?" for he may die, today or tomorrow. He therefore requests that his suffering be removed, to enable him to study Torah and acquire a place in the World to Come.
1. For the Conductor, for yedutun,1 a psalm by David.
2. I said that I would guard my ways from sinning with my tongue; I would guard my mouth with a muzzle, [even] while the wicked one is before me.
3. I became mute with stillness, I was silent [even] from the good, though my pain was crippling.
4. My heart grew hot within me, a fire blazed in my utterance, as I spoke with my tongue.
5. O Lord, let me know my end and what is the measure of my days, that I may know when I will cease.
6. Behold, like handbreadths You set my days; my lifetime is as naught before You. But all is futility, all mankind's existence, Selah.
7. Only in darkness does man walk, seeking only futility; he amasses riches and knows not who will reap them.
8. And now, what is my hope, my Lord? My longing is to You.
9. Rescue me from all my transgressions; do not make me the scorn of the degenerate.
10. I am mute, I do not open my mouth, for You have caused [my suffering].
11. Remove Your affliction from me; I am devastated by the attack of Your hand.
12. In reproach for sin You chastened man; like a moth, You wore away that which is precious to him. All mankind is nothing but futility, forever.
13. Hear my prayer, O Lord, listen to my cry; do not be silent to my tears, for I am a stranger with You, a sojourner like all my forefathers.
14. Turn from me, that I may recover my strength, before I depart and I am no more.

Tehilllim Ohel Yoseph Yitzchok, published and copyright by Kehot Publication Society.
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Daily Quote
The sound of my beloved knocking: Open for me, my sister, my friend, my dove, my perfect one...
  –Song of Songs, 5:2
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